In a recent operation at Murtala Muhammed International Airport, officers from the Nigeria Customs Service thwarted an attempt to smuggle fake $10,000 US by apprehending a 41-year-old Nigerian passenger, Ifeanacho Marcellinus Ugbor, bound for Brazil. The Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Charles Orbih, disclosed the details during a press briefing on Wednesday, 15th November 2023.
According to Comptroller Orbih, the suspect, armed with a valid Nigerian passport (B00033052), was scheduled to depart on Ethiopian Airline flight ET900 to Brazil on Friday, 10th November 2023. However, the vigilant officers, in line with their responsibilities under Section 66 of the Nigeria Customs Service Act 2023, detected the counterfeit currency amounting to $10,000 during the routine examination of his consignment.
The timely arrest occurred as the suspect was outbound, ready to board his flight, showcasing the dedication and diligence of the officers on duty. Comptroller Orbih emphasized the commitment of his team, stating, “We have eagle-eyed officers in this command that are ready to work 24/7 to make sure that anybody trying to commit such crimes is brought to book.”
Highlighting the cooperative efforts between the Customs Command and sister agencies at the airport, Orbih handed over the suspect, along with the fake currency and related materials, to officials from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). This collaboration aims to ensure that appropriate measures are taken to address the attempted currency smuggling and bring the perpetrator to justice.
The incident underscores the Customs Service’s unwavering commitment to maintaining the integrity of the nation’s borders and preventing illegal activities, particularly in the realm of currency smuggling.